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Re: Eclipse 3.0 Running ILLEGALY on Kaffe

Grzegorz B. Prokopski writes:

> On Thu, 2005-13-01 at 19:19 +0000, Andrew Suffield wrote:
> > On Thu, Jan 13, 2005 at 08:02:57PM +0100, M?ns Rullg?rd wrote:
> > > > Derivation is something that happens when you *write* the program. Not
> > > > when you build it.
> > > 
> > > How many times does it have to be stated that *using* an API does not
> > > form a derivative work of *any* implementation of the API?
> > 
> > More irrelevancy. Using an API is just a method for utilising part of
> > another work. It may or may not be a derivative. This is just a
> > variation on the 'linker' noise.
> Maybe, but then you should have your own, non-GPLed implementation of
> these APIs agains which you're compiling your code.  Ie. glibc has its
> own collection of kernel headers.
> Now, what we observe here, is that a GPL-incompatible code is
> explicitely compiled agains headers (.class files for that matter)
> that are GPLed.

Which GPLed class files is Eclipse "compiled against"?  ("import
java.util;" does not count: java.util identifies an API with
non-contaminating implementations.)

> Even according to Linus such "use" is not permitted
> 	http://seclists.org/lists/linux-kernel/2003/Dec/1042.html

Linux header files are different from Java packages in a number of

One difference is that C header files, especially those from Linux,
contain function bodies as well as function declarations; Java
packages define a functional interface but do not insert expressive
content in a file that imports the package.

Another difference is that Linux is the only implementation of many
functions; using those means that you require Linux specifically, and
cannot use an alternative such as the FreeBSD kernel.

> It seems though you could compile your code against another set of
> headers (.class files), that does not cause license conflict and it
> would be OK.
> We do not have to push interpretation of GPL as far as to claim
> copyrightability of the interfaces.  Using GPLed implementation of
> such interface to create your work does however create a derivative
> work.

Please cite law to support this hypothesis.

Michael Poole

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